Senegal: Karim Wade Calls for Restraint

Protesters set roadblocks in Dakar, Senegal, March 30, 2023.

Karim Meïssa Wade, a Senegalese politician who served in the government of Senegal as minister of State for International Cooperation, Regional Development, Air Transport, and Infrastructure from May 2009 to April 2012 has asked his fellow Senegalese to exercise restraint, wisdom and mutual respect.

In a message issued by the son of former Senegalese President Abdoulaye Wade, Karim said he's extremely concerned about the current situation in Senegal, adding it is urgent that everyone realizes that they risk being drawn into an impasse which can be fatal in Senegal.

"If I am speaking to you today, it is because I was the first politician to suffer from 2012, the consequences of the will of the current regime to eliminate all forms of opposition." "Having been arbitrarily imprisoned for three years by instrumentalised justice, then exiled far from my family and my country, I am well placed to tell the President of the Republic Macky Sall and Ousmane Sonko that oppression and violence can only lead to chaos," he wrote. "I am shocked by these events which caused the death of sixteen young Senegalese, whose families are devastated," he added while offering his condolences to those who lost loved ones."I solemnly ask all those who are tempted by excesses to come to their senses," he further said, noting that the demonstrators' acts of violence and vandalism can only harm their country. He also called on the security and defense forces to prohibit any unjustified use of force. "Violence is never a lasting solution."My call is also addressed to the entire political class, which has the responsibility to prioritise respect for institutions, dialogue and consultation," he further stated, adding: "As the history of the PDS demonstrates, power is not taken by walking over corpses, 14 innocent victims in 2021 and 16 others today, it is unacceptable and unforgivable."Unity, progress and peace will win with freedom," said the former minister."I would like, dear compatriots, to ask you to exercise restraint, wisdom and mutual respect. We are a great, proud people, united by a rich culture, sharing a common history. We need to know how to stay together in unity, solidarity, respect for the rule of law and democracy," he concluded.

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